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Joan Adams

August 13, 1932 - May 18, 2024

It’s with great sadness that we announce the passing of our dear mother, Joan Adams. Margaret Joan Adams (nee Balcaen) was born in Winnipeg and raised in Dauphin, Manitoba. After graduating from high school, she worked as a dental assistant which is where she met her future husband, Bob Adams. Bob was playing hockey with the Dauphin Kings at the time and had a tooth issue. He later teased that Mom convinced him to go out with her while he was under anesthetic.

Joan’s passion was raising her six children. She was the primary caregiver as Bob was often out of town with JN Pitts building roads throughout Northwestern Ontario. With a 16-year age span from the oldest to youngest child, Mom had a baby in diapers for most of her adult life, yet she found time for all of us. She insisted that we learn how to ski even though she didn’t ski herself. She was well known by the ski racers for making the best lunches ever. Every summer, she would pack up the station wagon for daily trips to Wild Goose Beach, including not only her own brood but also some of the neighbourhood kids. She was passionate about gardening and shared successes with dear neighbours on Avondale Place. Joan was renowned for her Sunday family prime rib dinners which morphed into an open invitation to all the families once grandchildren came along.

Mom spent many years volunteering at the Thunder Bay Regional Hospital. She covered hundreds of kilometres ensuring that the public porter chairs were cleaned and in the right place at the Emergency and Main entrances. She was a long-time member of the hospital’s quilting group and enjoyed presenting a crib quilt to the first baby born in Thunder Bay each January. Mom won several municipal awards for her contributions through volunteering. She was also presented with the Ontario Hospital Association’s provincial award for volunteerism at a ceremony in Toronto.

Mom had many fond memories of time spent with her neighbours on Avondale Place, the ladies at St. Elizabeth’s, her friends and colleagues at Edgewater Park School, the moms from the Lake Superior Ski Division, the Quetico Quills, and the Thunder Bay Regional Hospital quilters.

Joan was loved and will be missed by children Kathy (Keith) in Kamloops BC, Michael (Julie) in Barrie, Jennifer (Jean-Christophe) in Ottawa, and Greg in Thunder Bay. Grandchildren Stephen and David (Kathy), Robert and Emily (Mike), Chloe and Damien (Jennifer), Kate, Jack and Eric (Steve), Gord, Bea and Gabi (Julie) could count on Grandma for a wide range of baking treats and her famous pub cheese spread, as well as for crafts and treasures found along her travels. Joan was predeceased by her brother George (Mackie) in Montreal and her sister Pat in Winnipeg.

The family would like to extend sincere thanks and gratitude to the exceptional staff at Southbridge Pinewood where Joan lived for the last three years of her life. They were kind, caring, visible, available at all times and provided excellent communication with family members.

Mom was a strong supporter of the Thunder Bay Regional Hospital and the Thunder Bay Symphony Orchestra for those who would like to make a contribution in her honour.

Kathy, Mike and Jennifer (out-of-town siblings) would like to thank Julie, Steve and Greg (in-town siblings) and their families for the care of both our parents over the years. The family will gather in the future to share memories and honour our mom.

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